Candidates in their own words: Perry County
NEW LEXINGTON – The Beacon asked each candidate in lake-area contested races to respond to two question:
1. In 150 words or less, please explain what you believe are the two most important issues facing the office you are seeking and how you would address them if you were elected.
2. In 50 words or less, please explain why you believe voters should support you.
Our surveys were sent to the candidate addresses supplied by each county board of elections. None were returned.
Word limits were strictly enforced and some responses may have been edited for length.
Due the overwhelming number of political letters received for this week, we only have space for the Northern Local Schools survey this week. The rest of the surveys covering lake-area contested races in Fairfield, Licking and Perry counties will be published next week.
(vote for three)
Richard E. France
1. Richard E. France is actively serving his 18th consecutive year as a member of the Northern Local School Board. Richard has served in the following roles: Two terms as past Board President, current Board Vice President, Northern Local Board representative with Mid-East Career and Technology, as well as Board Legislative Liaison.
During my board tenure I have participated in the hiring process of both a district Superintendent and Treasurer. Additionally, I worked to establish policy which provide direction (vision) for the district. I see the critical issues facing Northern Local as technological advances, funding changes, and the pending selection of our next superintendent.
2. I’m asking for the opportunity to continue to serve the district and citizens. My experience gives me the capability to understand school funding issues and budget management. Since I’ve retired, I have more time to devote to serving the district. I ask for your support November 3rd.
1. My top two priorities are to provide our students with an education that will prepare them for life long success and happiness and to keep our district financially sound. I will hold our administration accountable for academic performance and for providing a curriculum that addresses 21st Century challenges. I will place a strong focus on our instructional program, support policies that foster academic excellence, and equip our administration with the resources required to achieve it. I support our extra-curricular and athletic programs because learning continues beyond the classroom. While a minor portion of our budget, they play a meaningful role in preparing our students for life’s challenges. Ohio’s financial crisis and its impact on our district concerns me. A penny saved is a penny earned. As a manager I have reduce costs, managed tight budgets, while continuing to deliver value. I will apply this experience as your board representative.
2. I have 19 years experience as an Army Officer and technology manager. I am involved with the Legion, Scouting, and have been attending school board meetings for three years. I know the issues, have experience to address them, and am ready to serve. Please vote for me on November 3rd.
Brian Luft II
Did not respond.
Charles W. Montgomery III
1. The two most important issues facing the Northern Local School District as I perceive them are: (1) to insure the fiscal stability and responsibility of the district during a time of great financial challenges in Ohio; and (2) to meet the challenges of providing every student with a quality educational program, based on their individual needs, that will allow them to achieve to the highest level of their capabilities.
Board policies primarily regulate the operations of the district, but they must also reflect the communities they serve. I have always believed any truly successful school district has a strong and active community support base. I would work to encourage open dialect between board members, the community, and administration when developing school policy issues to clarify purposes, to build community support/involvement, and to insure policies were consistently designed to continually improve the academic achievement of all Northern Local students.
2. My only reason for this campaign is to use my administrative/ fiscal experience to improve the educational opportunities of the children of Northern Local. My career as school superintendent (30 years) and school treasurer provides an in-depth knowledge all facets of successful school districts, including what makes an effective board member.
1. I have learned through 45 years of experience, in the corporate world and through life shaping events, that there is more than one way to accomplish great things, and that it often comes from many thoughts and ideas from all generations and walks of life. Experience has proven that successful ideas and outcomes rarely occur in isolation. Success comes from active communication, strong deliberation, clear/ transparent decision making and strong ethical leadership.
As a school board member, I will:
* Actively engage administration, teachers, staff, parents, and students.
* Seek your input and be open on policy development and board decisions.
* Take responsibility for financial decisions and performance requirements.
* Hold accountable those who are responsible for educating, shaping and molding our children’s future.
* Provide the required leadership to ensure Northern Local continues to evolve and prepares our children to meet educational requirements of the 21st century workforce.
2. As Director Regulatory Strategy (American Electric Power), with regulation, creating vision, policy development, and evaluating results. An Ohio University and more importantly a Sheridan graduate, it would be an honor - to give back to a community and a school that has given so much to me.
1. There are many issues facing Northern Local School District in the coming years. Most importantly is the need to develop better communication with the community. If elected, I will work hard to keep the voters informed of what is going on in our schools. One avenue for this would be the development of a communications committee that would provide a way to communicate the board’s message clearly to the public. This committee would also be responsible for getting public input on key issues for the schools.
Another key issue is an issue facing schools all around the state of Ohio. With the difficult economic times, it is imperative to monitor closely the funds spent in our school district. Taxpayers don’t have money to throw away. As a board member, I will analyze all purchases to make sure that they are necessary for the operation of our schools.
2. My background and experience make me an ideal candidate for the Northern Local Board of Education. I have shown through my involvement with youth sports that I care deeply about the children in our school district and I promise to always strive to make the best decisions for our children.